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Investigator: Election equipment was not connected to the internet

Election generic
Posted at 7:13 PM, Mar 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-23 22:44:12-04

PHOENIX — The curtain is finally closing on the Arizona State Senate’s ballot review of the 2020 election.

A newly released report by the “special master” charged with inspecting Maricopa County's networking equipment for connectivity to the election system found that election equipment was not connected to the internet.

In a settlement with the county, Former Congressman John Shadegg and a team of security experts were allowed to inspect networking equipment with the purpose of answering the Senate’s questions regarding networking connectivity. Shadegg relayed to the Senate that there was “no evidence that the routers, managed switches, or election devices connected to the public internet.”

The team further explained that while other networking infrastructure in the county managed by the Office of Enterprise Technology does connect to the public internet, that equipment plays no role in elections, which is an “air gapped” network.

Shadegg’s team told the Senate that they did not find any evidence that network history, in the form of “splunk” logs, were deleted or modified in any way.

Former Congressman John Shadegg acted as a go-between for the county and the Arizona State Senate and, along with a team of IT security experts, was given access to Maricopa’s main networking infrastructure at the Office of Enterprise Technology. County officials led by Sheriff Paul Penzone had previously balked at allowing the State Senate’s audit contractor Cyber Ninjas access to the equipment out of concern that public exposure to the county’s network would be a risk to public safety personnel.